The flagpole was acquired by a couple of members in the mid-70’s. There was an accident on I-395 (CT Turnpike back then) near the Greyhound track. The contractor for the State replaced the pole and left the damaged one on the side of the road. The State didn’t want to haul it away, and the contractor left the state when all his work was done. The State said we could have it. Not wanting to park along side of the thruway in traffic at night, Sandy Dodge and Harry Whitley carried the pole through mosquito infested woods in the heat of an August night to their waiting car parked on Route 12 near the plumbing store. They chose Harry’s car because it has a canoe rack on top. How the weight of that pole did not cave in the roof of Harry’s Chrysler is still a mystery. Off they went, under the cover of darkness, towards the Club with Sandy following close behind. Sure enough, in the center of Plainfield, a State Trooper pulled them over. Thank God, Sandy knew the Trooper, and he believed Sandy. After catching hell for not having a red flag on the pole, Sandy threw his flannel coat over the end of it and off they went.
The story doesn’t end there. After the pole was set up in front of the Clubhouse where it is now, it was recognized that there was no pulley on it to string a rope for a flag. So, one Men’s Day, attendees were offered money to climb the pole and put the pulley on top. Many tried, but only one man did it. Ed McCall from Griswold was the only person to shinny up that pole.
The only other person to make it to the top was Harold Beckwith. Some time later, he had the job of putting the rope through the pulley and made the climb look easy.